WHEREAS, pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 418.108, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins issued a Declaration of Local Disaster for Public Health Emergency on March 12, 2020, due to a novel coronavirus now designated SARS-CoV2 which causes the disease COVID-19;,
WHEREAS, the on-going evaluation of circumstances related to the virus and the updated recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and the Texas Department of State Health Services warrant the March 12, 2020 Order of County Judge Clay Jenkins be amended;
WHEREAS, on March 16, 2020, President Trump acknowledged the gravity of the COVID-19 pandemic, releasing strict new guidelines to limit people’s interactions, including that Americans should avoid groups of more than 10 people; and
WHEREAS, on March 19, 2020, the Dallas County Commissioners Court issued an Order of Continuance of Declaration of Local Disaster for Public Health Emergency that affirmed the activation of the Dallas County Emergency Management Plan and extends the Declaration of Local Disaster until 11:59 p.m. on April 30, 2020, unless rescinded by order of the Commissioners Court.
THEREFORE, County Judge Clay Jenkins issue this Order. This Order does not supersede or replace any other orders issued by Judge Jenkins pursuant to and under the authority of the Local Disaster for Public Health Emergency and such other orders remain in full force and effect pursuant to their terms:
UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF TEXAS GOVERNMENT CODE
SECTION 418.108, DALLAS COUNTY JUDGE CLAY JENKINS ORDERS:
1. This Order shall be in effect beginning at 6:30 p.m. on April 7, 2020 and continuing until 11:59 p.m. on April 30, 2020, or until it is either rescinded, superseded, or amended pursuant to applicable law.
2. This Order applies to all Long-Term Care Facilities (“LTCFs”) in Dallas County, Texas.
3. If a resident of an LTCF is identified with a COVID-19 diagnosis, the LTCF shall do the following:
a. Immediately notify all staff (from all levels of care or any job description within the LTCF) that a resident has been diagnosed with COVID-19. This notification shall be done in staff meetings, by phone or text message or email.
b. All residents (in all levels of care within the LTCF) who are mentally competent shall be informed immediately that a resident has been diagnosed with COVID-19. If the LTCF learns of the diagnosis while the resident is asleep, the resident shall be notified immediately after they wake. The LTCF shall insure that the notification is documented and maintained in its records, including noting the time and method of delivery of the notification.
c. Family members and responsible parties of all residents (in all levels of care within a facility with the exception of independent living) shall be informed immediately by phone, text message or email.
d. The Dallas County Probate Courts shall be informed immediately that a resident of the facility has been diagnosed with COVID-19. The LTCF shall send notification by email to LaNasha D. Houze, Director of Operations for the Dallas County Probate Courts, at LaNasha.Houze@dallascounty.org.
e. A notification statement of diagnosis of COVID-19 in a resident shall also be posted for public access within 30 minutes of identification of a case. The notice shall be posted at the main entrance to the LTCF and prominently displayed on the LTCF’s website. This website posting must be on the LTCF’s local webpage in addition to the LTCF’s corporate website.
f. Proof of the completion of all notifications in 3(a)-3(d) shall be provided to Dallas County Health and Human Services within six business hours of the identification of a resident’s diagnosis of COVID-19. For purposes of this subsection, business hours are from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
4. If an LTCF has any resident with a diagnoses of COVID-19, the LTCF shall institute the following measures within the same level of care:
a. All health care personnel must wear facemasks while in the LTCF and consider having all health care personnel wear all recommended personal protective equipment (“PPE”) (gown, gloves, eye protection, N95 respirator or, if not available, a facemask) for the care of all residents, regardless of presence of symptoms. The LTCF should also implement protocols for extended use of eye protection and facemasks. The LTCF shall insure that all health care personnel must have temperature and symptom checks prior to each shift. If a worker has a temperature above 99.6 degrees Fahrenheit, then they are prohibited from going to work and must remain at their residence;
b. The facility will be closed to new admissions and will also close all services, including outpatient rehabilitation.
c. Any and all of the staff at the LTCF shall not work at any LTCFs other than the impacted LTCF, and the administrator any LTCF shall keep a list of all employees who have worked at any other LTCFs, including the name and contact information for the administrator at the other LTCF.
5. Any standards prohibiting improper transfer of patients will be strictly enforced.
6. If an LTCF has any resident with a diagnoses of COVID-19, the LTCF may allow transfer of a resident to home care, but only after a patient has been tested as negative for COVID-19. In the case of such a transfer, the LTCF must provide a copy of this order to those in the household to which the resident is being transferred. Those persons in the household to which the resident is transferred are ordered to isolate at home for 14 days. Members of the household cannot go towork, school, or any other community function, except for workers included in Essential Healthcare Operations who may continue to work in accordance with CDC guidance.
7. If a LTCF has any resident with a diagnosis of COVID-19, the LTCF may allow transfer of a resident to a hospital, but only after the LTCF has provided notice to the receiving hospital that the patient is coming from a LTCF with identified COVID-19. If the patient is transferred by ambulance, the LTCF must also provide notice to the ambulance providers that the patient is coming from a LTCF with identified COVID-19.
8. Nursing facilities and LTCFs can accept convalescing (recovering) patients with COVID-19 if they are no longer deemed infectious as per CDC and local health authority guidelines.
9. The LTCF shall inform the Texas Health and Human Services Commission of all COVID-19 cases, the same day of identification of each new case. The notification must also include a tally of total cases.
10. The County of Dallas must promptly provide copies of this Order by posting on the Dallas County Health and Human Services website. In addition, the owner, manager, or operator of any facility that is likely to be impacted by this Order is required to post a copy of this Order onsite and to provide a copy to any member of the public asking for a copy. If any subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or word of this Order or any application of it to any person, structure, gathering, or circumstance is held to be invalid or unconstitutional by a decision of a court of competent jurisdiction, then such decision will not affect the validity of the remaining portions or applications of this Order.
IT IS SO ORDERED
DALLAS COUNTY JUDGE